Monday morning at ^:00 it was still as dark as the middle of the night. The only light was from the headlights on the mule. RJ ranged behind, beside and in front of me. He has no respect for the mule and darts in front of it, so you have to keep as eye on him when he comes along side. RJ bolted in front of me. I slammed on the brakes, skidding slightly on the loose gravel, narrowly missing him. He ran toward the big walnut trees. I continued to the barn.
When I got there I turned on the lights and music and went to get Libby. She is the lead mare so I get her out first. Then I got a whiff of skunk. I looked around the barn for the source. RJ was walking in the door with his head down and his tail between his legs. I now know the source of the stench.
I quickly put Libby and Claire in the pasture and clean the stall, frantically trying to see how to get the dog clean. We are shorthanded at the library and Lee is doing an early morning bus run. I remember using tomato juice on our dogs from childhood, but they were outside dogs and surely there is something better.
RJ, in the meantime was working desperately to remove the smell. He was rolling in the wet grass and rubbing his neck and face by pushing himself along the grass with his hind legs. When that proved fruitless, he rolled in the dirt in the turnouts. I was worried that he would roll in the horse urine, but in reality it couldn't get worse. And who knows? The acid might help! If it does, I hope it doesn't become a popular cure. Can you imagine men across the country taking car of dogs in this fashion? Yeah, me, too.
Next RJ rolled around and around in Claire's stall. The floor had a lot of shavings in it. I was impressed. Was it smart thinking or was he just desperate? It didn't work, but by this time he was a mess. Muddy and covered in shavings and stinking to high heaven.
When I got to the house, poor RJ was fed outside and locked out. While I fixed my break, I fired up the laptop and searched for the "recipe" for removing skunk stench.
Here it is. It's simple and you can remember it.
1 quart 3% Hydrogen Peroxide, make sure it isn't expired. It has been sitting there for years.
1/4 cup baking soda, you know the stuff in the yellow box.
2 teaspoons of liquid soap
Mix it all in an open bucket. Don't plan on saving it. A closed container may explode.
Use rubber gloves and work it into the coat. Don't get it in the eyes. It will sting. Then let it sit 5 minutes. If you have any left over, pour it down the sink.
I left Lee a message on his cell. He couldn't answer and I knew that, but I wanted him to know to stop on the way home. Then I tied the poor dog in the garage and went to work. I knew Lee would be home in the next hour or so, but I still felt bad for the sad little boy.
One part of message included an offer to come home at lunch when more people would be at the library. Honest. Nonetheless, my wonderful husband managed to buy the Hydrogen Peroxide and get the job done. He even gave RJ a regular bath after to make him smell good. It didn't completely work, but it was WAY better. The first night when we closed the door to our room to keep him confined, It was pretty bad. I had to open the bedroom window and keep the ceiling fan on low all night. I keep thinking we will wash him again, but it has just been too darn cold. Maybe it will wear off. Eventually. That's the plan at any rate.